Saw this on Twitter a while ago:
I had hoped it was a glitch, but no…The @CDCgov hospital capacity dashboard has gone dark. @CDCDirector has said CDC still has access to the data but apparently the public no longer does. pic.twitter.com/FyRt7YHvKc
— Charles Ornstein (@charlesornstein) July 16, 2020
Presumably this is the result of the Trump admin directive for hospitals to report COVID-19 data to the administration instead of the CDC. From CNN yesterday:
Hospital data on coronavirus patients will now be rerouted to the Trump administration instead of first being sent to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed to CNN on Tuesday.
The move could make data less transparent to the public at a time when the administration is downplaying the spread of the pandemic, and threatens to undermine public confidence that medical data is being presented free of political interference.
Michael Caputo, the assistant secretary for public affairs at the department, confirmed the change first reported by The New York Times earlier in the day, saying in a statement that the “new faster and complete data system is what our nation needs to defeat the coronavirus and the CDC, an operating division of HHS, will certainly participate in this streamlined all-of-government response. They will simply no longer control it.”
“The CDC’s old hospital data gathering operation once worked well monitoring hospital information across the country, but it’s an inadequate system today,” Caputo said in the statement.
(Yes, that Michael Caputo.) I wonder if the “new faster and complete data system” will be as technologically advanced as the Google-created testing website Trump announced with great fanfare back in March — you remember, the one that solved all our testing woes? Yeah, I’m guessing it will be exactly that helpful.
What we have here is an extension of Trump’s “when you test, you create cases” logic. Maybe I’m a crazy optimist, but I don’t think disappearing the data is going to work.
Actively degraded by Trump, the federal response to the pandemic has failed catastrophically, so local, state and corporate leaders are either stepping up or choosing not to. Target and CVS just joined Walmart in mandating masks in their stores nationwide. Even Alabama’s governor has mandated masks. Florida’s and Georgia’s governors have not and are undermining local efforts.
There will be life and death consequences, and, one hopes, monetary and political consequences too. We’re finding out in real time just how many of the people can be fooled ALL of the time.
*UPDATE: The data has reappeared, according to CNN. Hmmm!